Paralegal Internship: Letter for Prospective Employers/Supervisors
Dear Prospective Employer.
Delaware County Community College’s Paralegal Studies Program, which is approved by the American Bar Association, requires students to intern in a law office or closely related setting for a minimum of 180 hours during a regular semester or summer session.
This letter provides you with background information on our paralegal internship program; we encourage and appreciate your participation. The internship program has been an outstanding success for employer and student alike. Nearly every internship has proven to be productive and profitable.
Our students have received extensive classroom instruction in legal concepts and numerous paralegal skills in addition to a broad general education. After a brief orientation period; the intern should be able to work with increasing independence and at higher levels of responsibility.
The intern should be prepared to perform a variety of legal tasks helpful to you. Although by no means an all-inclusive list, the student can be expected to do a majority of the following:
- Perform analytical legal research.
- Draft pleadings and numerous other legal documents.
- Draft memoranda of law.
- Interview witnesses and clients.
- Assist with discovery, disclosure and trial preparation.
- Provide support services to an attorney in court.
- Keep clients up to date on progress of case.
- Perform tasks related to a variety of fields, including probate, incorporation, administrative procedures, subrogation files, collections, bankruptcy.
- Organize case files and develop practice systems (i.e., system of forms, documents, procedures, statutory deadlines. for a real estate closings, or incorporations).
- Draft correspondence and other professional-level tasks.
- Work comfortably with common law office technology.
Please realize that paralegals are typically good students, eager for a variety of challenging tasks, and ready to assume a number of tasks traditionally done solely by attorneys. It is also important to note that paralegals are a member of the legal team, quite distinct in function from that of legal secretaries and clerical workers.
The student receives four semester hours of academic credit for successful completion of the internship. To receive academic credit, the student must demonstrate that he/she has learned and/or practiced paralegal–level skills. In addition to performing tasks for your organization, an intern is required to keep a daily journal and a final report on concepts and skills he/she has encountered. Although not required for academic credit, an intern is generally paid a fair wage by the employer.
Delaware County Community College would sincerely appreciate your participation in this program. Not only will it help a student make the significant transition from academia to the legal profession, but it will also help ease the workload for the attorney while providing additional insights into a more efficient delivery of legal services. Thank you for taking time to meet with one of our students and if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Nilufar A. Jamir, LL.M.
Director of Paralegal Studies
Delaware County Community College